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Celebrities That Give Off Penn Stater Vibes

Penn State is the alma mater of a great deal of famous and successful people, from Keegan-Michael Key to Ty Burrell. For a lot of celebrities, though, fame and fortune get in the way of attending college the traditional way.

Whether they skipped college altogether or simply didn’t think to consider finding their academic home in Happy Valley, plenty of celebrities give off Penn Stater energy. So, we compiled a list of stars that we think would have attended Penn State if given a second chance.

Taylor Swift

While Swift may have gotten her honorary doctorate from NYU, she had to have always imagined herself going to college the traditional way. If she only had the chance to attend a Lion Ambassador-led tour without being mobbed by Swifties, we think she would’ve ended up in Happy Valley.

As an avid Eagles fan and self-proclaimed “outside of Philly” girl, Swift would fit right in with her fellow in-state students. Swift would be the type of girl to carry extra Nittany Lion temporary tattoos around the tailgate and even offer to apply one for you. If you need any further evidence, she brought her Fearless Tour to the Bryce Jordan Center in 2009 when she was the age of a typical college student.

Sabrina Carpenter

Another Pennsylvania native, we think former Disney actress turned Taylor Swift-opener would fit right in here at Penn State. Obviously a girl’s girl, she’d be the type to hold your place in the Starbucks line while you grab a coveted table or kindly let you know your hair is out of place.

She’d probably be in one of the biggest sororities and would be one of those people that everyone knows. Plus, campus is so big that she would be able to slink around without running into the boys that she sings about.

Christian Pulisic

There doesn’t need to be any speculation here. Star soccer player Christian Pulisic told a reporter that if he hadn’t immediately jumped into the professional soccer scene, he would have attended Penn State.

Pulisic would have been in University Park for the 2020 and 2021 seasons, and it’s hard not to think about what could have been. The blue athlete backpack would look so good on him.

Kendall Vertes

This one is just so easy to imagine. A former Pittsburgh girl and “Dance Moms” star, Kendall Vertes surely wouldn’t want to settle for something close to home – she’d want to be different. In fact, Vertes has been spotted in the past few years at some local fraternities and football games.

It’s unclear why she didn’t end up coming to Penn State, but we can see her on a Saturday afternoon with a white tennis skirt and Nittany Lion ear headband before joining the Lionettes to perform an incredible dance routine mid-game.

Ed Sheeran

OK, Ed Sheeran as a Penn Stater probably seems completely weird, but let us explain. On his most recent tour, Sheeran has been known to show up at random places in every city he visits to participate in some kind of community service or community interaction, and he loves every second of it.

Where better for him to go than the home of the world’s largest student-run philanthropy? Obviously, Sheeran would be a THON entertainment captain, working to cultivate the most electric music lineup for THON weekend. He’s the kind of guy that would make THON his entire personality, but not in an annoying way.

Lea Michele

Between her many roles on Broadway and the cinematic gold that was “Glee,” we think Lea Michele would’ve graced Penn State’s School of Theatre if she had the chance. She’d get the lead in every NRT show, even if she couldn’t read the scripts, and she wouldn’t shut up about it.

On top of all her performances, she’d probably be the president of her sorority and a THON captain, but in true Rachel Berry style, it would never be enough.

The Jonas Brothers

This one is obvious. The Jo-Bros love Penn State, and Penn Staters love them right back. The trio grew up in New Jersey, so they would be bleeding blue from that out-of-state tuition. Maybe you’d see Joe drinking a Dirty Sprite at Champs or Kevin with a painted chest at the Stripe Out game. Nick would definitely be the star of Centre Stage. If Disney hadn’t snatched the brothers up from an early age, we think Happy Valley might’ve.

Miles Teller

Between being a Pennsylvania native and starring in almost every popular movie released in the early 2010s, we think Miles Teller gives off Penn State vibes. Considering he pioneered the fraternity-loved mustache trend in “Top Gun: Maverick,” Teller would 100% be a frat bro. Naturally, Teller is a fan of all the Philadelphia teams and would bring that same energy to every Penn State game, rain or shine. Teller’s just the type of guy to start the “We Are” chant at every event.

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About the Author

Megan Dougherty

Megan Dougherty is a senior majoring in English and an associate editor at Onward State. She loves making music, consuming the maximum daily amount of coffee recommended by the FDA, and overanalyzing Taylor Swift lyrics. Feel free to follow her on Instagram @meganedougherty and forward any (free) The Eras Tour tickets to her email, [email protected]

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